Steven Van Zandt and Jackson Browne call for Marriott boycott

Marriott boycott

This image was distributed with a press release about Steven Van Zandt and Jackson Browne calling for a boycott of Marriott Hotels.

On Nov. 18, Steven Van Zandt, who has a long history of being an activist as well as a musician, used his Twitter account, @StevieVanZandt, to draw attention to an environmental issue. He wrote:

Marriott Hotels have a new policy of serving room service in plastic containers. This is a terrible idea for at least 4 reasons: Plastic is a worldwide environmental problem; Economically it is idiotic; The negative imaging removes all class and dignity from the hotel chain. The concept, which is to minimize human interaction (!) is mindless and counterproductive at best. And totally unnecessary since the employees I met were wonderful people. This needs an organized protest.

This was followed, Nov. 21, by a press release stating that Van Zandt and Jackson Browne have joined Plastic Pollution Coalition in calling for a boycott of all Marriott International-owned hotels.

“The last thing we need right now is more plastic waste,” Van Zandt said in the press release. “There is no longer any excuse — if there ever was — for businesses to sacrifice environmental responsibility for profit. The two are no longer mutually exclusive — if they ever were — and any attempt to present the false choice of one over the other is a lie.”

Browne said, in the same press release: “We each have it in our power to support businesses that take care not to further degrade our environment, and to bring that considerable consumer power to bear in the fight for a sustainable future. I’m happy to answer Stevie Van Zandt’s call for this boycott. I spend much of my year in hotel rooms, and it is absolutely my choice not to stay where they serve food in plastic.”

I have contacted Marriott’s spokesperson, asking for a comment about this. I have not heard back yet but will add the response here, if I get one.


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Elaine Klementovich November 27, 2018 - 3:14 pm

I’m with you! Trying to change the bad habits of out hospital in the amount of trash they discard and use of styrofoam!

Carleda Tinkler November 27, 2018 - 9:24 pm

Good for you to boycott and make this information available to others. I, myself have become to hate plastic in all forms and uses. It’s horrific what it’s doing to our environment and sea life!!!

Nancy November 27, 2018 - 9:27 pm

I just stayed in two top Marriott Hotels and was shocked at both to see this. Very limited room service menu as well.

cat beretta November 27, 2018 - 10:19 pm

who cares.oh, Hollywood does. who cares!!!

Colleen knoth November 28, 2018 - 12:52 am

Why not boycott them cause they refuse to give their bay area employees a raise to a living wage in the last 5 years but have DEFINITELY raised their room rates…close to $800.00 a night at the San Jose downtown convention center location??? Nobody cared when those workers were on strike….

Ray Aument November 28, 2018 - 12:56 am

From Lori Buch and Ray Aument, We are scheduled to attend the 2019 International Sea Turtle Symposium from Feb.2-8 which is being held at Charleston, SC Mariott. In order to qualify for special registration rates which are very important for many sea turtle conservationists you must stay at the Marriott and we have already committed as has lots of others due to an early registration discount. We can contact the symposium organizers about this issue however the conference is run by sea turtle biologists, researchers,professors other words folks with a lot on their plates in addition to setting up and running the conference . I doubt at this point it is possible to tell Marriott they’d move the conference at this late date since attendees, both speakers and students and even volunteers of the sea turtle community come from all over the world and will have made arrangements already to help save on cost as again conservationists are not typically overturned or overpaid. So, What can we do aside from also expressing our concerns to Mariott? Jackson, we think you may be acquainted with (Wallace) J. Nichols who may have given you an award several years ago for your commitment to our oceans .We don’t know if you know him well but he is probably involved in some way with helping to make the conference a success . We are volunteers in the sea turtle community so we don’t have much control and are lucky just to be able to attend this event however it is just ironic and sad to get this news about Marriott ‘s choice to change to plastics considering the ultimate effect this could have to negatively impact sea turtles. We will make our concerns known but must do so carefully as this year’s president of the symposium did us a very kind turn to make it possible for us to attend and he may not have much of a choice in dealing with the Marriott as a large corporation now that many plans are in place. There is always hope and again if you can offer any other suggestions it would be appreciated so we can maybe involve the sea turtle community in assisting Marriott to understand yet another negative outcome off their new policy. Thank you and Steven for speaking out and thank you for your attention to this matter. If we get any helpful responses we will try and pass those on to you. Sincerely, Lori Buch and Ray Aument.

Lori Buch November 28, 2018 - 3:25 am

We posted a fairly long message regarding an organization We are a part to protect sea turtles holding it’s 2019 symposium at the Marriott. Was the message received?

John Shepherd November 29, 2018 - 4:53 am

Marriott’s Codes of Ethics and overall business practices are plastic; its executive rhetoric is plastic; its green, sustainability, Serve360 and “people first” initiatives are plastic. Room service on plastic? No surprise there. The most authentic aspect of the Marriott modus operandi is its hypocrisy.

‘Marriott CEO, Arne Sorenson, asked for a show of humility, compassion and professional integrity… (and pigs might fly)’

‘Marriott International Inc [MAR] turning a blind eye to risk – Board urged to “talk or resign” ‘

Stahlilama January 23, 2019 - 9:43 am

I agree plastic is bad when used improperly. And I agree a boycott is need and for these reasons I will be boycotting concerts from now on. Every concert I go to they empty my bottle of beer into a plastic cup just so I won’t throw my bottle at the artists already damaged head.

Why can’t these Hollywood types be consistent and really dive all in for a cause even if it affects their income.


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